Author Topic: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow  (Read 532 times)

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Offline woodsy

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Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« on: October 08, 2021, 02:01:35 pm »
Anyone else experienced with this medical condition ?
Think I've reached a point where guitar playing for 1 1/2 years steady
is and has been causing elbow pain and swelling for quite awhile now. Fretting side,
strumming/pickin side is normal.
Started last winter and doesn't seem to be healing.
Thought it was from running a chainsaw a lot but now looking at this
as guitar elbow.
Have not sought medical advice yet due to the continuing Virus spread ,staying away from public settings, but need to do something .
Quit playing guitar for awhile while healing with icing/massage etc.?
Surely others here have experienced this or maybe I'm just more
prone to it from age.
Found this from a Chiropractic practice:

"Much like tennis players who put tremendous repetitive strain on their elbows, musicians often suffer from “tennis elbow.” Musicians who play guitar, bass, banjo, ukulele, merlin, lute, or other stringed instruments, push their strumming elbow and connecting ligaments, tendons, and muscles to the limit, often leading to painful inflammation, restriction, and inability to play. If caught early, understood, and strategically addressed, the dysfunction that causes the inflammation and pain can be addressed, getting you back to playing while getting stronger and more resilient."
« Last Edit: October 08, 2021, 02:30:48 pm by woodsy »

Offline Jamolay

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2021, 02:24:14 pm »
I don’t know much about this other than rest and some tape or elbow wrapping.

Mostly, I would look at this as an indication of a problem with body mechanics in your guitar technique that needs to be addressed.

Like carpal tunnel, this is not simply “over use” it is over use and a problem with positioning/technique or other body mechanics.

You may need to alter your style a little to overcome it.


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Offline woodsy

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2021, 01:38:54 pm »
Thanks, you're probably right.
Been getting more aggressive with the fret hand and mastering some of the Barre chords can be straining.
I just noticed the medical forum here, duh, so will go through that as this topic
seems to be well covered already.

Offline Jamolay

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2021, 02:03:00 pm »
Think of this a bit like a sport. You can’t run a marathon on day one without consequences, warm up matters and technique is super important for avoiding injuries…


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Offline woodsy

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2021, 09:56:25 am »
So I put the guitar in the case for 3 weeks and tended the sore left elbow.
Got the inflammation under control somewhat with thumb massaging the 
sore areas of the forearm and alternating heat.
Not out of the woods yet but playing again . Really missed it.
The last song I learned was the first one I forgot, the pickin intro to Free Bird lynyrd skynyrd had me scratching my head . Stumbled a little with some other well played songs but just needed some rehearsal .
Taking time off from playing was interesting in that I forgot parts of well known songs.
But it all came back after a songbook or video refresher and some practice.
Probably going to need some physical therapy to get it back to normal but
that is on hold until the virus spread abates.
In the meantime, Needle and the Damage done taught by Justin
is on tap, lovely jingle that needs to be learned.
 


Offline skeldol

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2021, 02:36:11 pm »
I used to do a lot of rock climbing and as a result I suffered with tennis elbow every year.  Depending on how I treated it, it would last anything from 3 months to 12 months.

I never really found physio much help, at the end of the day I think its an injury that requires rest to mend.  I would agree though that it's worth looking into your mechanics as I'm guessing you don't need to suffer with tennis elbow from playing guitar.

I found these things really helped:
https://www.racquetdepot.co.uk/band-it-therapeutic-armband/?setCurrencyId=1&gclid=CjwKCAjwoP6LBhBlEiwAvCcthPbuzmwwhcqSMllOEE6FOr8qXlBM1ji91133jNdYqyD-NDkmcOVZ_xoCeg4QAvD_BwE

My approach was to rest until the pain becomes local to the elbow (initially I would feel pain throughout the arm).  I'd then start to train on easy stuff that would not jar or hurt the elbow using above strap, gradually increasing intensity of training as pain eases off.

Good luck, its a frustrating injury to have!

Offline woodsy

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Re: Lateral Epicondylitis or guitar elbow, like tennis elbow
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2021, 01:27:26 pm »
Thanks for the input skeldol.
Interesting armband, a step above my elbow compression sleeve no doubt.

 

 

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